Cordemoi, Gerard De

, a French historian, was born at Paris, of a noble family, originally of Auvergne, and having studied law, was admitted to the bar, which he quitted for the philosophy of Descartes. Bossuet, who was no less an admirer of that philosopher, procured him the appointment of reader to the dauphin, which office he filled with success and zeal, and died the 8th of October 1684, member of the French academy, at an advanced age. We are indebted to his pen for, 1. “The general History of France during the two first races of its kings,1685, 2 vols. fol. a work which the French critics- do not appreciate so justly as it deserves. 2. Divers tracts in metaphysics, | history, politics, and moral philosophy, reprinted in 1704, 4to, under the title of “CEuvres de feu M. de Cordemoi.” They contain useful investigations, judicious thoughts, and sensible reflections on the method of writing history. He had adopted in philosophy, as we before observed, the sentiments of Descartes, but without servility; he even sometimes differs from them. In the latter part of his life, he was assisted in his literary labours by his son Lewis, who was born in 1651, and who became successively a licentiate of Sorbonne, and an abbot in the diocese of Clermont. He was a voluminous writer, chiefly on theological subjects; and was considered among the catholics as an able advocate of their cause against the attacks of the defenders of protestantism. He was, however, of considerable service to his father in the latter part-of his “General History of France;” and, it is believed, wrote the whole of that part which extends from about the conclusion of the reign of Lewis V. to the end of the work. By order of Lewis XIV. he continued that history from the time of Hugh Capet until the year 1660, which he did not live to finish. He died at the age of seventy-one, in the year 1722. 1